According to Lisa Randall, a theoretical physicist from Harvard University, humanity owes its existence to dark matter. Dark matter is the spooky and invisible matter that scientists claim makes up over 85% of the universe. It's the stuff "in between" all the rest of the universe that we can see.
So how does dark matter affect the fact that you can swipe left? Well, the general consensus among palaeontologists is that around 66 million years ago, a giant 14-km-long meteor slammed into our planet wiping out the dinosaurs and the vast majority of everything else too. However, there were survivors. A small shrew-like primate that eventually evolved to become you, me and your boss (maybe).
Here's Randall's theory; a space rock would never have struck the Earth had our planet not been travelling near a "dark disc", a flat disc-like collection of dark matter. As time progresses, our solar system moves around the Milky Way galaxy in the same way the Earth orbits the sun. The evidence suggests that our solar system passes through this disc of dark matter every 32 million years which seems to line up nicely with the extinction of the dinosaurs. So what happened? As the solar system moved through this dark matter, gravity around it increased, pulling objects from the nearby Oort Cloud towards our system. The Oort cloud is about 2 light years from our Sun, and it is filled with billions of icy space rocks, many of them larger than 19 kilometers in length. One of those puppies hits us and boom...curtains.
While there is no hard evidence for dark matter, most astrophysicists believe it to exist. The math seems to work and it explains a lot of weird anomalies in physics and astronomy- I'm sure the big breakthrough is on its way. Until then, we are left with the fact that regardless of dark matter, you and I exist because something from outer space allowed us to exist. I just hope another one doesn't show up to screw it all up- I really need to see the new X-Files...
Here is a link to the original article from Business Insider.
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